Hair Colorist Tracey Cunningham’s Profession of Many Shades


Discovering the precise hair coloration is a transformative enterprise. After years of trial and error and sporting shades that wash your face out or don’t suit your coloring, discovering your precise hue is like profitable an extended battle. And such victorious moments will be credited to the expertise and experience of the precise colorist. For the previous decade, Tracey Cunningham has been simply that: the go-to coloration guru for stars like Jennifer Lopez and Anya Taylor-Pleasure—and for girls who received’t be strolling purple carpets, too. Irrespective of who they’re, Cunningham’s shoppers will journey throughout the globe for her abilities. The main colorist—who additionally occurs to be an advisor at Olaplex— launched a guide this week titled True Colour, which displays on her decades-long profession working on the prime of the sweetness business. True Colour not solely offers key hair recommendation based mostly on the information Cunningham has amassed through the years, but additionally gives an in depth have a look at a few of her most unforgettable hair seems. Beneath, the Los Angeles-based colorist shared some perception on quite a lot of the subjects explored in her new guide—from avoiding dry locks to the results of mineral buildup on the hair.

Tips about Going Purple?

“Going purple is difficult as a result of typically, the colour must be layered on to stay to the hair. As soon as it’s in, it’s the toughest coloration to get out of the hair as properly—so I at all times inform shoppers it’s good to be actually positive you need to be a redhead. When a blonde goes purple, I add in low-lights as a result of they have already got the highlights. Brunettes that need to go purple require a full head of highlights; if they’re absolutely dedicated, they’ll want a base coloration with a number of highlights after which a gloss over it so it doesn’t look too monochromatic.”

“I like to recommend visiting your skilled hairstylist for a gloss each two weeks to take care of the colour. Don’t attempt to put it into your individual arms with merchandise from the grocery retailer—use a coloration secure shampoo like Olaplex No 4. Bond Upkeep Shampoo. Hydration is actually essential to lock within the coloration, so use a weekly hair masks like Olaplex No. 8 Bond Intense Hair Masks to assist impart shine, physique, and moisture. The stronger and more healthy your hair is, the longer the colour molecule will keep contained in the hair. Lastly, don’t use super-hot water when washing hair because it opens up the cuticle.”

How About Going Blonde From Brunette?

“First, I like to recommend making use of Olaplex No. 0 Intensive Bond Constructing Therapy and Olaplex No. 3 Hair Perfector the night time earlier than your appointment, if you happen to don’t know that your stylist is utilizing Olaplex within the salon. These two merchandise are the dynamic duo to strengthen and restore the hair. trick? Be certain to use it to locations which might be most broken.”

“When going from brunette to blonde, it’s essential to be reasonable. As hair colorists, we’re not magicians, and it might take a number of occasions to get it proper. Keep in mind, if you happen to had a base coloration up to now three years, it may nonetheless be within the hair. I used to be simply instructed by a shopper at this time who wished to go blonde from brunette that her hair was virgin. I began coloring her hair and observed the ends weren’t lifting. It seems she forgot that she did a rinse final 12 months and it was nonetheless there. This generally is a very troublesome state of affairs because it’s nonetheless not the colour that I had initially supposed—and I’m a perfectionist!”

“One other good tip is to get trimmed first, earlier than coloration. I not too long ago did a full head of highlights and discovered afterwards that she was scheduled for a haircut; all of her coloration was reduce out. At all times reduce first! Lastly, most individuals don’t want trims on a regular basis. I’d say about each three months—until you might have a sure look or fashion you are attempting to realize.”

Her Most Unforgettable Hair Second

“It’s so humorous how we consider our jobs as so essential. I’m at all times touring to satisfy with shoppers on set who’re on location. For Jennifer Lopez, I as soon as flew to her to do her hair, and once I arrived, she had a wrap on her head. She seemed completely lovely—actually, there wasn’t a lot for me to do. I left her with the wrap on her head. I really actually like this story and confer with it within the guide as a result of it jogs my memory to place issues in perspective. It was unforgettable for me in a good way, and she or he seemed higher than ever—with out hair coloration even enjoying an element.”

Minerals in Water and Their Impact on Hair Colour

“Look, I don’t have a chemistry diploma—nevertheless, I see the see the injury these minerals trigger if you find yourself sitting in my chair. When folks have mineral buildup, their hair just isn’t solely inexperienced but additionally very broken. Minerals and chemical substances from the hair coloration should not the perfect mixture. When shoppers have mineral buildup of their hair, there have been occasions once I typically see a chemical response happening, proper earlier than me: the foils are scorching to the contact.”

Staying Grateful in a Typically-Superficial World

“It’s simple to remain grateful if you find yourself within the service enterprise. However in all honesty, I really feel actually blessed with what I achieved and have. I’ve at all times been capable of handle my son—once I first began, I used to be a single mother, and it was all about hustling and ensuring he had every part he wanted. Now that he’s older, I don’t consider it the identical means.”

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